Sikh American Community of Chicago holds Interfaith Prayers and Candlelight Vigil for Las Vegas Shooting victims

"The vigil was to honor the souls who lost their lives in the Las Vegas shooting, remind us how precious life is, h...

Punjab News Express/Rajinder Mago

PALATINE, USA: In remembrance of the 58 victims who died and nearly 500 injured, in one of the worst mass shootings in American history, on the night of October 1, 2017, outside the Mandlay Bay Hotel in Las Vegas;  the Sikh Religious Society in Palatine, Illinois organized a prayer service and candlelight vigil. 

Despite a rainy workday evening, more than 150 members of various faith groups and leaders surrounded by people of good will gathered to pray and honor the victims of this horrific massacre of innocent souls enjoying an outdoor music concert. 
The vigil started indoors with Kirtan (singing of Sikh hymns) in the langar hall of the Palatine Gurdwara (Sikh place of worship). The hymns translated in English meant, "This world is burning with hatred, O' God please save it with your blessings and mercy in whichever way it can be saved."
Twelve speakers, representing the Sikh, Muslim, Zoroastrian, Bahai, Christian, Hindu, gun violence prevention communities, and civil action oriented organizations addressed the gathering. The speakers shared their personal stories, faith perspectives of hope and peace, and emphasized solidarity and strength in opposing gun violence where innocent lives are lost.
"As we all continue to pray and support the victims and families of the Las Vegas shooting, we must also vow to do more to combat the underlying problems associated with these types of mass killings," said Amrith Kaur, Legal Director of Sikh Coalition in her speech at the vigil.
Dr. Balwant Singh Hansra opened the program, Dr. Pardeep Singh Gill executive secretary of Sikh religious Society welcomed the guests.

"This gathering is against hate and violence and with deep respect for human life. We believe that we are all one," said Rajinder Singh Mago, who introduced the interfaith speakers. 

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